Tuesday, June 13, 2000

Former worker faces felony charges in contract dispute

By Sheila McLaughlin
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        LEBANON — A former trainer at the Warren County Career Center faces more serious criminal charges involving accusations that he contracted for work with a central Ohio school district immediately after resigning from the school.

        The grand jury indictment, released Monday, came nearly two weeks after Larry Davidson, 44, was scheduled to plead to a misdemeanor charge of violating Ohio's “revolving door law.” The hearing never occurred.

        He now faces felony and misdemeanor charges of having an unlawful interest in a public contract, as well as a violation of the revolving door law.

        Warren County Prosecutor Tim Oliver refused to comment on whether he sought the indictment because Mr. Davidson did not plead to the original charge on June 1 as expected.

        Mr. Davidson, reached at home in Franklin, said he showed up at the hearing in Warren County Court but neither the judge nor the prosecutor was there.

        He said he was not aware the case was presented to a grand jury, and declined further comment.

        He could have been jailed for up to six months in the earlier case, which likely will be dismissed.

        However, the latest charges increased the possible sentence to 18 months.

        Prosecutors allege Mr. Davidson used his position at the career center to secure a $2,100 contract to devise a safety plan for Maysville Local Schools shortly after he quit his job at the career center last fall.

        Mr. Davidson told The Cincinnati Enquirer in March that he created several safety plans for school districts as a career center employee, and got the Maysville job only after the career center had canceled its contract with Maysville.

        Authorities said under state law, Mr. Davidson had to wait for at least one year before contracting for similar work. However Mr. Davidson said he was unaware of the requirement.


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